Saturday, October 03, 2009

Job Plunge



While there appears to have been a recent flurry of activity in the temporary document review job market, the overall American job market continues to deteriorate. They always say that an uptick in the temporary job market is a leading indicator of good things to come. Let's hope so, and pray that the red line doesn't continue to plunge off the cliff.

http://www.calculatedriskblog.com/2009/10/comparing-employment-recessions.html

75 comments:

Anonymous said...

These pretzels are making my FIRSTy.

The "flurry" of activity isn't quite impressive enough yet, though it's definitely better than a dead market. But... several of my friends were super-psyched about one announced project only to hear from the recruiter that the firm decided to go with hiring like only 5 guys. What a downer.

Anonymous said...

This is not a recession, it's a depression. They will only admit this years later.

David said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Emily said...

There are plenty of jobs out there. When I see those fat women walking out of Kentucky Fried Chicken with those screaming little welfare brats, I realize that this bad economy is just an excuse for those lazy enough not to work. If you want to see the unemployment rate fall, cut off al welfare now.

Anonymous said...

a) They are predicting that the unemployment numbers will remain high for as little as 2012 and as late as 2017. They are already referring to this decade as America's lost decade in the same way that Japan has experienced these trends due to its screwed up capital markets in the early 90s.

b) As far as the legal market, nearly everyone is saying the shift is toward more temps, and less perm associates.

"Wildman says it will continue to recruit high-quality candidates from law schools. But over the past 18 months it has increasingly turned to staff and contract attorneys to do document review and research -- tasks often reserved for first-year associates. The change provides a better cost structure for its clients, the firm says."

http://www.law.com/jsp/article.jsp?id=1202434243272&Wildman_Harrold_Rescinds_Job_Offers_to__New_Associates

If you will take note, this means they will be hiring higher end recruits for the same positions they once hired us. A top law school grade may end up as a contract attorney at a Big Law firm as a sign of their being the top.

The shift that Big Law is promising is toward more contract attorneys and staff attorneys with fewer associate positions. Or as they put it, partners, a few star associates and the rest in contract workers.

This means that those ranks of document reviewers will now be filled possibly by higher and higher calibre recruits as they see it. There is actually a lot more evidence for this trend than I am presenting.

Anonymous said...

I should add that it is only speculation regarding the higher end schools. What is not speculation is that they will rely on temp lawyers more so there is probably going to be in the next year or so a lot more work than what you are seeing right now. Some of it may even be a tiny tiny bit more substantive than just doing document reviews. ie, basic research.

Anonymous said...

by bad- I mean best unemployment numbers at 9.8 though 2011. But real unemployment above 15 percent.

Anonymous said...

http://www.law.com/jsp/article.jsp?id=1202434224051&Hard_Times_for_Harvard_Law_Students&hbxlogin=1


It's bad even at Harvard Law School.

Anonymous said...

http://www.law.com/jsp/
article.jspid=1202434224051
&Hard_Times_for_Harvard_Law_
Students&hbxlogin=1

Anonymous said...

This blog is so depressing.

Anonymous said...

"For David Wilkins, an HLS professor and director of the school's legal profession program, smaller associate classes and increased outsourcing of traditional associate work will eventually lead to lower entry-level salaries. Wilkins told the Crimson that such reforms are necessary for the legal industry to rebound.

"Some of my students might not appreciate this, but I think it's a good thing," he says."



A good thing, you stupid prick? Outsourcing is literally gutting this country from the inside out. No jobs ='s no recovery.

Nando said...

The money masters have sold us down the river. They did so about 30-40 years ago. We are now seeing the restructured American shit economy in action. Low wages, low prices. Welcome to the land of the free and the home of the brave. Hooray!

thirdtierreality.blogspot.com

Anonymous said...

Fight at S&C!

http://www.youtube.com/
watch?v=7q2rm8-0Fxo

Anonymous said...

I am Nigerian. I will do working for $5 per hour. No need to hire J.D. They have bad attitude.

Anonymous said...

" am Nigerian. I will do working for $5 per hour. No need to hire J.D. They have bad attitude."

Lol, Hi babu! Only an Indian working in an LPO would accept $5 per hour or per day.

The Nigerians like the $40 per hour jobs. You won't seem them on the lower rate gigs.

Once again LPO troll, you know nothing.

Anonymous said...

Now, if they can only open the research and writing market. Those positions aren't even posted. There are highly qualified former associates who don't even hear about them. Instead, the positions are given to the agencies' pets.

So, must for competition. The firms should demand a open posting and submissions for all qualified candidates.

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Anonymous said...

Get off your asses and get a real job. There are plenty of law firms that are hiring. In the short term, your hourly rate may be less at the local storefront slip and fall firm, but you'll gain valuable experience that will enable you to switch to a better firm or open up your own law firm.

Thankfully I am employed at a good law firm, but if I wasn't, I'd take an honest job making lattes at Starbucks before I became a Click Monkey.

Anonymous said...

yes and so would many of us temps.

For the last five years, I have applied to Walmart, Target, and Starbucks. I have not gotten any job from them. I would have accepted any entry level salary to get a start.

After being an associate for a while I would have done anything to switch careers. I don't know why no one was interested in me. I think I had the wrong approach and at that level, needed to get to know other workers who could have recommended me.

Far from looking down at a Starbucks employee, I admire and envy them. Being a doc reviewer I am embarrassed at what I do, even though I have met a lot of high quality people. Most in the same desperate boat as me.

Anonymous said...

After being a temp I have no ego left any more. I can't even call myself a lawyer because I don't think I am. For people from Nigeria it is of course a big step up in life from eating bugs and paying off judges, but to me it is the shattering nightmare of going down the wrong path starting with the liberal arts degree then law school. People always feel they have to justify what they did. "I would have done the same thing again."
"I made the right decisions. I have no regrets."
"being a lawyer is something to be proud of."
"I;m a doctorate of law."


I look at myself in the mirror and laugh at what an empty shell of a human being I am, doing nothing year in and year out.

Anonymous said...

I really love doc review. It's a great job and I'm happy to do it. Besides, on my current project they have us writing memos, it's great.

I never really understood how a few pathetic malcontents on the web try to smear the work for everyone else. Doc review is decent paying work and normally the cases are hight profile and interesting. And especially these days, in NYC there is a pretty high quality of attorney on doc review projects. T14 grads, former biglaw associates and former staff attorneys. It's a pretty select group. If any of you idiots think it's all Nigerians, think again.

The quality on NYC doc review is really, really strong these days.

I'm very to be working and have been doing this work for years. Doc review and e-discovery are great ways to make a very comfortable living.

There are good projects and projects. If you find yourself mired in some cesspool, dig hard and find a better project. Don't freak out post idiotic, whiny messages on the Internet, it just make you look bad.

Once you land a good project, click and enjoy. Grab a cup of cofee, slip on your headphones and code way.

It's much better than a lot of other work. I cannot think of anything worse than slinging coffee and frappucinos for strangers all day. Uggggh.

Doc review is far better shitlaw or any McJob.
It's

David said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Angel said...

David, you're a twit. There's plenty to do besides doc review if you're willing to earn 50K or less. Okay, I'm being harsh.... 60K. Fuck that. I'd rather do doc review and pay my bills. Eff the experience of being a real lawyer. It's all about the benjamins, baby.

http://butidideverythingrightorsoithought.blogspot.com/

Anonymous said...

Angel, you're a moron. You only think you are making more money than the 50k law firm - but that's like a hooker who makes $200 a night pulling tricks. The shelf life of a hooker is a short one, and when she's done, no one will touch or hire her for anything.

A doc reviewer is the same way. You may as well put a big scarlet letter on your forehead, because even a third rate workers comp firm won't touch a Click Monkey. The only serious way to make a living in the practice of law is to practice law.

Anonymous said...

Well put 7:48. We are doing it but for many of us it's temporary. We spire to better things - not sit in a hell hole and be bossed by ghetto staffers. Maybe for people who haven't seen anything better in life it's great, but for those of us with ambition and motivation and personality it's a shit hole.

Anonymous said...

The last posts by people saying how great doc review is or how people who don't like it are whining shows you the whole problem.

The people in this industry have tunnel vision and really no ability, motivation, or alternatives. They have silly ego and look down at other jobs.

The reason this industry will never change is that you have half or more of the people who are like this, and who tell the smarter people who think rightly they should be doing better to get lost.

Lawyers: selfish, selfish, selfish. me, me, me. Read the above posts, they're all about the great I am,

Anonymous said...

Why did all temps vote for Obama?
Answer: because they are selfish but this way they can say how open and giving they are. i.e. zero cost.

Anonymous said...

8:23, that's the problem I see with all the whiners on here. They do not see or plan out a career - they're only looking at the present choice of Doc Review vs a crappy entry level job at a P.I. mill. What these shortsighted individuals don't understand is that lots of lawyers start out working at crappy firms, making horrible wages, but they are ambitious and use the opportunities presented in such work to lateral to new and better firms or to make contacts so they can go out on their own to start a firm.

People just want things handed to them without doing anything.

Anonymous said...

Why so much hate for temps? This is a blog called "Temporary Attorney" after all.

If you are bitter and don't like doing contract work, go away. No one cares about your hidden (LPO) agendas.

Many of us like doing this kind of work and find it rewarding. Especially now, it's a way to pay the bills until things get better.

I think those of that think you are too good to contract work are pretty sad. The trend is to hire more contract workers including attorneys, not fewer.

You operate with a sense of entitlement, that given the current economic climate, is quite stupid and shocking.

I would imagine that you are yet another LPO troll, stirring the pot. As usual, you seem to have never worked on a temp project in your life.

Otherwise, you seem to be too racist to work with people of color or from different cultures and I would strongly suggest you get out of new NYC.

Angel said...

You guys are all insane. I don't aspire to be a temp attorney forever... and I haven't even started it yet. But I'd rather be a hooker doc review attorney than a hooker low life associate. Working at a shitfirm doing shitfirm work is just as much a resume killer as being a contract attorney. My plan is to do temp work until my 7 years of relevant LAW experience can land me a real job. It's a means to an end. If you think that being an attorney at a small firm does something to your resume... well, maybe if you have no experience... you're insane. But I'll have you know, being a broke-ster and having debt collectors calling your employer to garnish your wages is also a resume killer.
FYI, I practiced law for many years. And having asshole lawyer bosses that are very similar to you assholes that post here..is what makes the practice of law UNBEARABLE. Can't wait to leave the legal field.

Angel said...

Not everyone here is an asshole. I regret that statement.

Anonymous said...

There are assholes in every profession. What about old maids - they are the worst, too. I just got a job - and glad, but I have to work with a spinster - and boy is she angry!! I try to look as ugly as possible every day. So depressed....

Anonymous said...

That's so funny, 9:17. I think that fat spinsters that sacrificed their looks and lives to their careers are just as bad as asshole bosses. I feel your pain. I've worked for one of those too. Because she had no one in her life, she would spend late nights in the office and practically glare at me when I left early (7:30pm) to do something social.

Norma Rae said...

I'm not going to take it anymore!

Anonymous said...

If anyone has to go, it is the lower level associates that earn over 160K engage is unnecessary research and draft useless memoes that are never read.

Doc Review however is the necessary grunt work that is the bread and butter of every major case.

Anonymous said...

"Otherwise, you seem to be too racist to work with people of color or from different cultures and I would strongly suggest you get out of new NYC."


Another lawyer telling other people to get out - in this case, of the whole city!

me, me, me.

what I say, you have to do.

This idiot also says doc review is "rewarding".

Can you believe that?

Once again, he/she also says that the complaint against hiring foreigners shows not wanting to work with "people of color".

Such a great mind, your law school must be proud of your logic.

This is why the temp world will never change. People like this.

I think working with foreigners they are "nice". Therefore they should be hired and Americans should lose jobs.

Because I say so,

A lawyer: the great I am.

Anonymous said...

10:48 PM


another retarded, delusional temp.

says doc review is more important than associate work.

riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight!

That's why doc review people are so qualified they could ever have been hired as associates at top law firms!

Doc reviewers just are lower level grunts who sort through documents to give to associates for ultimate analysis and disposition. There isn't an ounce of ability required to do this.

Another person who has to trumpet how important they are.

"I am a Juris Doctorate. I hold a doctoral degree."

"I went to shit law school in the bottom of my class, and am a ghetto dunce, but I am more important than a Cravath associate and better qualified, too."

Anonymous said...

A high school student could do document review.

Anonymous said...

Arguing over whether an associate or document reviewers perform better work is like arguing over which flavor of shit you would like to eat.

Better Coder said...

Hey all,

Just wanted to let all my fans know about the great weekend. Hit up Pasteesh on Friday night, hooked up with hot chick there so sprung for a suite at Hotel Gansevort. Needless to say I tapped that ass all night.

Sat. night, some friends and I hit up some dinner at Nicholas followed by drinks at the 40/40 club.

All in all, I dented the wallet somewhat. I am roughly 1500K poorer...but oh well! I double that this week.

Very Truly Yours,
Dolla Dolla Bill Coder
www.bettercoderthanyou.wordpress.com

Anonymous said...

Norma Rae, are you as mad as hell???

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dib2-HBsF08

Anonymous said...

Sorry Babu,the big UK firms are now bypassing you and going straight to South Africa!

I guess they're cheaper and do better work than your so called "attorneys". You are a joke.

http://www.legalweek.com/legal-week/news/1557398/slaughters-looks-outsourcing-options-client-request

Anonymous said...

"If anyone has to go, it is the lower level associates that earn over 160K engage is unnecessary research and draft useless memoes that are never read. "


This just goes to show - again - how little the doc review temps know.

Never having really worked at a law firm - kept in some side room not allowed near the operations - they make such stupid comments like this.

It is true that associates are the biggest cost for law firms and that temps can increase partner margins.

But the whole structure of a firm is to recruit partners out of associate ranks. At some firms like Wachetll they have a 1:1 partner to associate ratio and any associate can become a partner.

No doc review temps could become a paralegal let alone an associate or partner. Their knowledge is zero!

As for associate memos being worthless, actually memos is work product that has to be worthwhile because it is a record that can be scrutinized again and again. A temp could not write anything worth reading.

click,click,click!

Anonymous said...

Outsourcing overseas is as inevitable as manufacturing moving to China and the Raj-land.

Better to have this than to have floods of very undesirable people from Nigeria moving into your neighborhoods and destroying your workplaces, schools, and communities with their crime, pidgin English, coolie standard, 20 family members in their apartment, drugs, internet scams, etc. etc. etc.

Smell that Nigerian home cookin' in the office microwave?
Yum!

Wait until the last taxi call to bill max hours and use taxi to New Jersey with the 700 family in toe.

Anonymous said...

Better Coder you are a very good representation of the yuppie grads wanting to move to "The City" and wasting money at expensive "in places to eat" with their rubbish so called friends.

One question: what do you tell your friends you do? An attorney at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind Wharton & Garrison no doubt?

Bring Emily to Nobu with your unfunny self next time. She will give you the night of your life and make a man out of you you wimp!

Anonymous said...

Read this bullshit blog which shows why lawyers are idiots impressed by the image and the carpeting!!

Wow, Axiom has nice carpeting.
And interviews 60 people for every one job. Such good screening!

Finding Balance in San Francisco: I Interviewed at Axiom Legal ...Axiom Legal is one of the new breeds of service firms emerging in law, accounting and strategic consulting, among others. By structuring its business model ...
balancedmommy.blogspot.com/.../i-just-interviewed-at-axiom-legal.html

Anonymous said...

I'm a "balanced mommy".

In between Mc Shakes, I balance having a fling with the gas station attendant and yelling at the hen-pecked hubby for not bringing home more bacon.

This is my idea of balance!

Then I watch Oprah and she tells me and my other stay at home mom friends how overworked and mistreated we are.

Anonymous said...

"it is a record that can be scrutinized again and again."

Give me a break! Memo gets deposited into some backroom file cabinet. Biglaw is scam, scam, scam.

Anonymous said...

Oprah says all Nigerians are crooks.

"Recently, America's TV girl, Oprah Winfrey, called on America to sever diplomatic relationships with world's most corrupt countires.




Worst of all the countries, Oprah surmised is Nigeria. According to her, "all Nigerians - regardless of their level of education - are corrupt."




So much for the solidarity between Nigerian crook job stealer dumb overbillers and the great American black people.

Anonymous said...

Fuck you New Yorkers, and fuck you B. Hussein Obama voetsr, too.

Obama sounds, acts like, and is the new Hitler. A scary self obsessed maniac with brainwashed very very very dumb followers!

Anonymous said...

99.9% of doc reviewers in the US are native English speaking, JD holding, licensed attorneys.

Anonymous said...

except for the 30% who are Nigerians and hidden in the closet when the client shows up.

No guarantee by not outsourcing you aren't getting a bunch of Nigerians.

Anonymous said...

There's a big news that "ghost contractors" work with Nigeria's corrupt president to bleed the country dry.

Ghost contractors?

Sound familiar?

Anonymous said...

Why do these people always blow their cover so quick? You would think Better Coder could pull off his farce awhile longer, but now I'm convinced that on top of being unemployed, the guy is a virgin that has never had a date in his life.

As bad a situation as some of us are in now, at least we've been able to get free sex during college at the latest, and didn't have to spend $1500 on it in our late 20s. Rather, to be so out of touch that we'd make up a number and a story like that and then post it on a board read by people in their late 20s/early 30s and older.

Anonymous said...

Better Coder said...

Hey all,

Just wanted to let all my fans know about the great weekend. Hit up Pasteesh on Friday night, hooked up with hot chick there so sprung for a suite at Hotel Gansevort. Needless to say I tapped that ass all night.

Sat. night, some friends and I hit up some dinner at Nicholas followed by drinks at the 40/40 club.

All in all, I dented the wallet somewhat. I am roughly 1500K poorer...but oh well! I double that this week.

----------------------------------------------------------------------

That little night of debauchery cost you "1500K"? That's a total of $1,500,000.

What are you...the world's only millionaire doc reviewer?

You hopeless dope. If you're going to make up shit, at least make it remotely plausible.

Helga said...

Better Coder is a lying sack of shit.

David said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
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Anonymous said...

I have it from an "inside" source that Better Coder is gay. The girl referenced is just a beard.

He does enjoy the Meatpacking district, no doubt.

Anonymous said...

Stephanie from S&C? ugh..what a hag she was...oompah loompah...this blog should be shut down and the ppl gassed who post here

Anonymous said...

Can someone critique my poem:

every day I listen and sense
the sea of humanity struggling
overwhelmed and distracted
a friction we cannot oppose


What do you guys think?

Anonymous said...

I think your poem is a piece of shit. Go back to coding you TTT.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone here also ever worked with Parrot-nose Heather B. of Pfizer?

Anonymous said...

I really hate my life.

Anonymous said...

We hate your life too.

Anonymous said...

have it from an "inside" source that Better Coder is gay. The girl referenced is just a beard.

He does enjoy the Meatpacking district, no doubt.



The Buddy Holly-looking faggot should be renamed "Butthole Loader."

Akshen said...

If future BigLaw doc review and contract work is going to be heavily skewed towards The Golden Children (i.e., Harvard/Yale/Stamford grads, top 5-10%/Law Review types elsewhere), then let 'em have it. I suspect that that trend is being overstated, but I think it may be a real one (given the pressures of offshoring, automation, etc).

As for the rest of us who are not Golden Children: IF you can afford it, get out NOW. Bite the bullet and take that $50K entry-level job (especially if it's in an area of law that may interest you) or, if you have the money and skills, start your own shit. If The Golden Children are going to rule the Document Review world from now on, let 'em have it.

Anonymous said...

Or better yet, get out of law entirely if possible.

Anonymous said...

I'm not in NY, but my advice may be helpful and in agreement with some of the more thoughtful posters or readers(yes, there are a few...). My examples are from real life but simplified/streamlined.

If you want to get out of document review you have to plan and it may (probably will) take a while - possibly years. One lawyer I know lived carefully and saved money while earning overtime on a lengthy (over a year-long?) contract, so that he would have enough saved to start his own sole practice and live until business picked up. He also did document review once he started his practice and sometimes had to meet clients evenings, weekends, etc. (I realize some places won't hire you if you're a sole practitioner, this was for an employer without that restriction).

Someone else I know would spend her free time doing volunteer legal work (pro bono type) and my understanding is that when there was a job she was interested in the non-profit sector (i.e. a paying job in that field!), she was treated as a credible candidate because she had that experience.

Someone else got an in-house position several years after first interviewing there (a position came up on short notice due to needs with expansion), and that person had made sure while doing document review (for years) to also do some legal writing, volunteer work, etc. so that there were other things on his resume besides document review. He also did a good job at document review and had some references from lawyers and project managers from his recent work (not an ass-kisser, if anything the opposite, but my understanding is he did a good job and was scrupulously honest about time).

What these 3 examples have in common is that they planned ahead for how to get out of document review, and they all spent "free" time working toward that goal (preparing for sole practice, volunteer work, legal writing, etc.). As hard as it may be to go home and do more work during the evening and on weekends, that's what you have to do.

Obviously some document review jobs have overtime hours such that eating and sleeping are about all you have time for, but when the overtime ends or you're between contracts, you still have to work toward what you want even if you're not getting paid for it.

Anonymous said...

Why not go to trade school and make 100k/year as an electrician/plumber, they're always in demand, have great unions and have work unlike unemployed temp doc reviewers...you ppl are suckers...gonna enjoy my filet lunch now

Anonymous said...

Is that a mac filet?

Anonymous said...

The idea that the experience gained working for a small firm is better than doc review is really stupid; its much worse. Trust me, you're better off doing high-profile doc review in NYC (everyone knows the market sucks) than slinging cut and paste motions for some down and out ID mill.

There is no "prestigious" experience to be gained at a small firm because its all low paying shit work, which requires no thinking at all. Work for a year at an insurance defense firm, small, medium, or even large, and BigLaw firms will treat the experience as utterly worthless.

The other practice areas, family law, criminal law, (personal) bankruptcy, workers comp, PI,estate planning (for the average working stiff) and all the other over-saturated, mindless areas of law are garbage work.

As in everything, there are rare exceptions. There are some small firms that do BigLaw work (e.g. small securities law boutiques), but those firms are few and far between and many have probably been wiped out by this depression. Competition for these boutique firms are, of course, almost as competitive as BigLaw.

Anonymous said...

Do you remember in Clueless, where Cher was doing doc review?

David said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
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